In previous blogs we talked about the many positive changes and opportunities that SuperStream has brought about through the services that the ATO provides, but what about the benefits to super Funds? When will the pain of implementation finally give way to benefits?
It should come as no surprise that super fund administrators indicated recently that they feel as though SuperStream has been a constant source of interruption to their normal operations. To keep things in perspective this is one of the largest changes the industry has had to manage since the launch of the superannuation regime itself.
The ongoing fine tuning to the legislation leading up to the 30 June deadline for large Employers resulted in ever increasing system and procedural changes for superannuation Funds and their impacted service providers. This proved not only a time consuming but costly exercise in order to meet the June deadline, and with small Employers next on the list of compliance, there may well be more implementation challenges to come. Funds understandably feel as though SuperStream has detracted from key activities around member engagement both due to budgetary and time constraints.
With the introduction of Single Touch payroll looming in the horizon, Funds are understandably nervous about the impact this may once again have on their operations and the additional costs this may bring. Whilst the rollout of this latest change has been deferred, there is still apprehension that this will once again lead to further disruption to Funds and Fund administrators, and again maintain the focus on Employers rather than members.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel
Although implementation challenges may continue there will be benefits to SuperStream for Funds as a result. Business leaders themselves recognise this and are seeing this ahead of those at the operational level charged with implementing IT and business changes.
One of the key positives to come out of SuperStream is the opportunity to engage with Employers to discuss solutions to best meet their compliance obligations.This in turn forges a stronger relationship between Funds and Employers which can only be positive.
Additionally, many administrators have made significant investments to superannuation improving processes and superannuation platforms which will no doubt streamline the way they operate and result in efficiency gains. Benefits from straight through processing and staff training will pay off in the long term once all Employers have transitioned and Funds are able to operate under a common set of processes for all Employers.
These will definitely benefit operations in the long term, however there may still be a few implementation challenges ahead before the real gains are evident.
Lilian is a Senior Consultant with IQ Group and has extensive experience in delivering a broad range of end-to-end projects, with experience in requirements management, software testing and test team management.